The industry has been strongly opposed to the scheme

The industry has been strongly opposed to the scheme

A trade body has hit out at a move by Australia's Northern Territory (NT) Government to reinstate a controversial recycling scheme. 

The scheme, dubbed “cash for cans”, was abandoned in March after Australia's Federal Court agreed with a legal bid from Coca-Cola Amatil, Schweppes Australia and Lion. However, the country's Federal Executive Council this week moved to overturn the court ruling. 

The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) claims that consumers would bear the cost of the initiative. The scheme involved consumers paying a AUD0.10 (US$0.10) deposit on cans, which was refunded when returned.

“The reinstatement of the cash-for-containers scheme is effectively a tax on glass and plastic drink containers, which will push up an average family’s grocery bills by around AUD300 a year,” said Gary Dawson, the AFGC's CEO.

He added: “The NT Government’s decision to continue this bad policy will not correct the numerous flaws in the legislation, which have resulted in ongoing commercial disputes, proven shaky legal underpinnings and only increased costs for consumers with questionable environmental benefits.”

CCA said in March that it would cut its prices in the Northern Territory as a result of the scheme being abandoned. Nobody was immediately available for comment from the company today.